Top tips for making meditation easy & a daily part of your life
Can you agree with either of the following:
- I have never meditated but keep thinking I should?
- I have tried meditating but never stuck with it as I just feel too busy / not able to relax enough / feel it doesn’t work for me
If either of those sentences resonates in any way then you’ll find this really useful. As a professional therapist, I support myself with plenty of self-care. I believe that the more fulfilled and contented I can be within myself, the more I can offer my clients, family & friends. You can’t pour from an empty glass as the saying goes. And meditation is a daily part of my life, much like brushing my teeth is. Yet it hasn’t always been such a given in my life. You see, I would have agreed with the first sentence about five years ago.
Meditation seemed like something I should be doing but wasn’t. Then after reading a few books & chatting to friends who were all over meditation, I tried it. Poof! I began thinking, this simply isn’t for me I thought as my mind wandered. What might I have for my tea? Gosh, then I thought of all the things on my to-do list. Feeling like a failure, I gave up.
Don’t give up…
And strangely, it was actually meditation that found me again. Some months later, I discovered I was locked out of my house (left my keys inside!) while I waited for my partner to come home from work. Since it was a sunny day, I had a walkabout at my local park. with an almost dead phone battery & all alone, I sat in the shade of a tree. I sat comfortably and found myself relaxing and naturally closed my eyes. Before I knew it, my mind calmed & feeling no pressure to be anywhere, to do anything or be with anyone, I simply let myself and my mind be still.
And then magic happened. I lost myself in stillness. I could hear the birds, a few cars, children playing & yet, I simply kept on being aware and bringing myself back to my breath then opened my eyes to feel transformed. Now I know that might sound a little woo-woo. Yeah right you might be thinking, but my experience felt so clear and powerful that time (worked out it was about 20 minutes) had begun a meditation journey that is now a daily ritual that supports my self-care.
Benefits of Meditation…
Wow. This is a pretty long list if I’m honest. There’s plenty of science-based research to show that regular meditation can improve:
Sleep Chronic Illness Anxiety Low Mood Self-Compassion Relationships Stress The list goes on but you get the idea. While of course, it can’t magically make your problems go away, meditation can help support you in coping with day to day life. It helps gives you the space in your head to reflect and respond from a place of calm to better manage situations. Anyway, meditation is FREE and can be done ANYTIME & ANYWHERE! So why not read through the tips below to get started…
Top Meditation Tips…
- Be compassionate to yourself. If you miss a day or can only manage 5 minutes one day, don’t worry. You’re always only doing the best you can. Simply try again the next day.
- There’s no right or wrong. Often it can feel like there are people that can meditate and people that can’t. This is simply not true! We ALL have it in us to meditate – it’s about the resistance to beginning or continuing meditating. If you have any desire or curiosity to try it then I invite you to nurture that curiousness you feel and give it a go.
- Start small. Even two minutes of sitting and breathing a day are better than none! It can be easy to think you don’t have time to sit for hours. Well, you don’t need hours! and remember, we all have the same 24 hours available to us each day – it is how we use it that matters!
- If you try and find yourself fidgeting and restless or full of thoughts and unable to settle, this does not mean you are doing it wrong and should stop. Quite the opposite! When you persevere with the challenge of sitting still and calming your mind, that’s when you grow and begin to reap the benefits.
- Rather than thinking of meditation as a chore or a hassle you have to somehow squeeze into your already busy day, try to reframe that thought as something more positive. Let it become a healthy habit (just like brushing your teeth!) and like anything new, keep going until one day, you realise, it has actually become a part of your daily life.
Top Meditation Apps…
Meditating on your own, without any apps or anything, is a simple and wonderful technique to develop. Though you may find in the early weeks of getting going, you prefer to be a little guided and using an app can actually help you strengthen your meditation muscle and create that healthy habit you so desire. While there are lots of apps out there to explore and try, here’s my pick of the top ones to try:
I hope you’ve been able to take a little bit of inspiration from this post. That a little seed has been planted so when you’re ready, you can try to find the peace and calm you desire through meditation. Until next time, Love & Light, Caroline